RACIAL ISSUES AND ME-REBLOG INTEGRATED SCHOOL

Oneta 84

Today and tomorrow I am reblogging posts from last year.  I want them in this series.  If you remember, good.  😀  Probably be worth a re-read.

I can’t tell you much about the racial makeup (of my first class) except that there were no blacks.  The blacks were in the neighboring school district – other side of the bridge they had to cross to get to school.   One boy was killed on that bridge.  I don’t remember the particulars; I guess a car hit him.  Good kid.  I don’t think he was likely to have been “horsing around.”

Those two community schools were combined in 1966, I think, my second year of teaching.  Students were a little older.  I think fourth and fifth graders.  There was conflict – not in a physical way, but in the way conflict is caused by an enforced law.  My opinion is that the blacks did not want to give up their neighborhood school and be forced to be outside their comfort zone – tossed into an unknown sea.

I was overly conciliatory, trying to prove myself to them.  I ended up in tears.  I’m forever thankful for a black principal who asked me a question which was very insightful – “Why are you putting up with what is going on?”  He then reamed me out a bit and sent me back to my classroom.  😀

That initial encounter was summer session  When regular school started in September, I had a class of students many of whom I will never forget.  This brings to mind a girl who left a note on my desk.  I found it after school.  It said, “We know you love us.”  What an insightful child!  At the age when all kids write “I love you” or “Do you love me.”  I wonder how she knew I needed that.  I’m sure I did not verbalize that.

  Over the 17 years I had heartbreak.

A boy who killed his father with a vacuum hose.  I don’t think he served any time.  Mostly because he did it because his father was beating his mother.

A boy who stabbed a girls hand with a pencil – he committed suicide when he was about fifteen, tied a cinder block on his leg and jumped out of a boat.

A boy who arrived at school with dog feces on his back thrown by other children.  I visited him in jail a few years later.  He had killed someone over a drug deal of some kind.  He remembered me.

A boy whose burned body was found in a motel bathtub. He had fake ID on him.  Someone apparently thought they would fool the police.

A boy who said out of the blue, “Teacher, what would you do if you were robbing a house and the police came?”  Upon my answer he said, “That’s not what my dad said.  He said to run because the police wouldn’t shoot a boy in the back.”

A girl whom I encountered as I served as Asst Chaplain in the county jail.  She was badly beaten.  I recognized her name; she remembered me.  I told her I was surprised to see her in jail.  She told me she started drugs when she was twelve which led to the guy who she lived with; the one who beat her up.  She was moved up to trustee then released.  I saw her about three weeks later.  Again beaten up by the same guy who did it the first time.

A fourth grader who was pregnant.  link

And the little one who left me the note?  Yes, I found out about her online.  She has a string of drug arrests.  I’m so sorry, Baby Girl.  I wish I could have protected you.

Whites – Browns – Blacks

As I sit here with tears running, do you possibly believe I care to which race these children belonged?  Do you care about their race?  I could tell you if it is important.  I’m sure you agree, it is of the least importance!  But there were some of each.

HEARTBREAK.  But nothing to do with race.

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RACIAL ISSUES AND ME – BACKGROUND

Oneta 84

Those who know me at all, know I was rocked in the cradle in Sunday School and Church.  From as early as I can remember we sang Jesus Loves the Little Children.  We had missionaries visit us regularly – with artifacts and pictures and films.  But always those children who looked different than we did were from far away.

But we little children who loved Jesus were quite often inspired to be missionaries.  My mother prayed diligently for me at the altar.  I remember her crying as she prayed that Jesus would always be with me – even if He wanted me to be a missionary, she would be willing.  I would be her  sacrifice.

When I was probably no older than five or six, mother and I were sitting in a car in Denver when a black man walked by on the sidewalk.  The first black I remember ever seeing.  I remember her talking to me. I don’t know what she said – she probably called him a colored man – but I do know she gave me no reason to see him as inferior.  Just different.

Just how different came from my Granddad Jim.  I write about him a lot.  What I learned from him was that he loved to go to the “colored” churches.  He loved them – their singing, their preaching, their enthusiasm and worship. And he loved the way they called out to the preacher while he preached.  I don’t know whether or not he ever was invited to preach to them.

Even when coming to Oklahoma City for college and marriage, I knew no blacks in school, church, or work.

My first black “say-hello-to” married couple lived in an apartment next to us in Alamosa, Colo, when I went there to finish my teaching degree in about 1962.  I wanted to work with disadvantaged children so I obtained a minor in sociology.

When I came back to OKC and applied for a teaching job, the Personnel Director said he would hire me but he couldn’t say for sure to what school because he assumed I wanted a placement in north Oklahoma City – meaning  a white school. I told him, No, I had a minor in sociology and I wanted a placement “downtown.”  With a pleased expression he grabbed the phone and that afternoon I interviewed with two principles and took the job with the first one.

Downtown! I got!  Just in time for busing!  That’s where LOVE began.  For seventeen years, I taught third, fourth, fifth, first, second grades and reading labs.  Whites, blacks, Indians, and Mexican.  Jesus Loves the Little Children of the World, Red, Brown, Yellow, Black, and White; all are precious in his sight,

I filled every slot where a teacher was needed.  I taught in at least six different classrooms.  That wasn’t because I failed in all of them!  😀

It broke my heart when I had to move because of my husband’s job change.  I went from there to a reading lab in an all white junior high — highly disciplined.

 

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HOW DID I GET LIKE THIS!

Oneta 84

A young black man, thirty-ish in age maybe, just delivered some medical stuff to me.  I remembered him from about six weeks ago when I had been at their store.  He was very helpful that day and I was going to tell him how much I appreciated his help but someone else saw me out to the car and I did not have the opportunity.

Today I remembered his name and told him how much I had appreciated his help before.  We chatted a little about Covid and I asked him if he was a Christian.  He said he was.  So I asked if he was expecting Jesus to come soon.  He said “yes.”  With a “then I will get to know you better in  the sweet by and by.” he left.

Now the problem.  Then the doubts and questions came to my mind.  Would he think I was saying those things because I am racist.  In case I might have been “surprised” that he could be that nice?  I wrote something similar a few weeks ago about my encounter with the young black man at Aldi’s.  Remember?

The same thing happens when I compliment a black girl for some special reason.

I am fed up with the wedge that has been driven into my head that tells me blacks now see me as a racist simply because I have white skin!

I would have had NONE of those kinds of thoughts a few years ago.

I’m tired of seeing myself through the current national chaos and propaganda designed to divide the country!  It is happening to me and my eyes are wide open.

I have already written some posts about Me and the Racial Issue.  So there is more to come in the next few days.  Today just gave me the motivation to jump into this subject.

In case anybody wonders, I AM NICE TO YOUNG WHITE MEN also.  AND WOMEN TOO, especially those who are working above and beyond what they have to do.  And with great attitudes to boot!   😀

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HOT SPOT SHOT

Oneta 84

A spot of chocolate on my blouse

A spot of coffee on the carpet in the house

A spot of clouds in the sky

Promising rain when it is dry.

“Spot on,” a writers delight

When she’s worded something just right.

Hit the spot,

See the target, give it a shot.

Blouse to the cleaners, and I say,

“Can you redo this today?”

Shoulder massage, that’s the spot,

Rub a little harder, I like it a lot.

*************

Taking a shot at hitting a hot spot.  😀

Prompt by Linda – just write whatever comes to you with little editing.  Stream of Consciousness Saturday

https://lindaghill.com/2020/08/07/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-aug-8-2020/

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LONG TIME ON THIS TRAIN

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

PHOTO PROMPT – © Jennifer Pendergast

Another train car to unpack.  I’m now on my ninth.  One for each decade.

The first four, I packed my cars – education, family, houses, cars, friends and stuff – from cars and jars to singing tunes and measuring spoons.

Then come the unpacking.  Car five, dropped sons and their stuff; car six, dropped education and career; car seven, home and hobbies; car eight, had to let go some vim and vigor.  Now unpacking car nine – letting stuff go – from cars and jars to singing tunes and measuring spoons.

Keeping body and soul while awaiting the Glory Train.

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100 word picture prompt by Rochelle https://rochellewisoff.com/https://rochellewisoff.com/

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BRUISED REED

It looked so beautiful sitting on the Wal-mart display unit in the veggie section. I reached over and touched the leaf – just a bit more – actually I crushed the leaf. Oh, it smelled so good! I was told it was a basal plant, $3.99, so into the basket it went.

At home I set it in the window over the sink so I could enjoy it. However, it gave no aroma without the crushing process. Each time I bruised it, my fingers radiated aroma from the crushed leaf. That’s the reason I’ve been sitting here rolling this basal leaf between my fingers.

I remember Granddad Jim preaching “a bruised reed, He (Jesus) will not crush.” ….. I wonder what I will find if I look in his old Bible. Yes, it is there—Isaiah 42:3– and it is no surprise to me that it is underlined. He must have painted quite a picture for me to remember for these seventy years or so.

His word pictures surely showed a tender Jesus careful not to jostle the weak ones in the crowd, a loving Jesus leaning to lift a fallen woman, a gentle Jesus choosing steps on the hillside which would do the least damage to the flowers blooming there, and perhaps even a smiling Jesus holding a donkey while he waits for his mother to join the caravan getting ready to go into town.

And I am astounded at the love that was shown by God the Father when He chose to bruise this gentle Jesus so He could become my Magnificent Savior!

Oh, lean in close, smell the sweet aroma emanating from the risen Christ—the victor over the horrific stench of the bloody cross, that cruel instrument wielded by the harsh treatment of those who were unbroken, but who also were invited by this long suffering, gentle, and loving Savior who prayed, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

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I am posting again from about four years ago.  I needed it again.  

Image: unsplash

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POWER

six word

Rain waters;

Rein controls;

Reign terrorizes.

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Six word story challenge by Shweta Suresh using word “rain.”

https://thesoulsearchersite.wordpress.com/2020/08/01/saturday-six-word-story-prompt-6wsp-49-aug-1-2020/

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HUH? WHAT DID YOU SAY?

 

“Come on, Dad, grab some bread and let’s go see if there is any evidence of peristeronic activity in the park,” Mike says as he attempts to get his eighty-year-old father to give up his seat on the couch.

“Don’t need to.  I learned all about periscopes when I was in the Navy,” Dad replied.

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Challenge by Sammi Cox;  Use “peristeronic” in a 53-word submission.  https://sammiscribbles.wordpress.com/2020/08/01/weekend-writing-prompt-168-peristeronic/

 

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REMEMBERING JOYCE

Oneta 84

“NOT ALL RESCUES LOOK ALIKE”

2 Samuel 22:17 & 20b “He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters….he rescued me because he delighted in me.”

Pondering this scripture, my internal thoughts went like this: “I have asked ‘why’ I was rescued and given more time to live on earth. I guess the reason is “that You delight in me.”

But, Lord, that can’t be. You delight in all your kids. Many more deserving than I. Look at Joyce. I know you delighted in her. But she died fully trusting you.”

That’s when I “heard” these words. “Not all rescues look alike.” Isaiah 57:1b & 2 “devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.”

Who am I to doubt that Joyce’s rescue was not as great or greater than mine? Our times are in his hands.

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This was written in 2014 when a friend died.  I’ve changed the name  in memory of a family friend who was just horrifically murdered.  It is near impossible to not ask why.  So even though we ask, we also accept by faith that the Lord Jesus, who she walked with all her life, also held her closely in his arms at the end.  

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CLEANSING BLOOD

Drop of blood on finger on white background

Drop of blood on finger on white background  IStock image

What a thought!  No amount of vileness touching the blood can taint it!  Instead the vile becomes clean by the blood!  Praise God!  Praise God!

I cut my finger a few days ago.  I held it under the faucet and let the blood go down the sink.  We have a septic tank; I suppose there is some residue of that blood still in there.  I don’t know just what happened to it but I know it didn’t clean the tank! I guess something will cause it to change to some other form of something.  😀  (I could ask Sammy but I don’t want to know that much about it.)

Well that’s the reason I’m thinking about Jesus’ blood cleansing my sin stains.

But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. … If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:7, 9).

 

 

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